Clarkslegal LLP - Solicitors in Reading and London

Employment - Legal Updates

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Feb
02
2011

Would your workers go on strike?
#Employment

As the RMT was forced yesterday to call off the rail strike that would have caused chaos to the big 6 nations rugby match between Wales and England this Friday in Cardiff, it is worth asking the question, why and when do workers go on strike? In an article this week on the BBC News Magazine site, "Working out if strikes are worth it?", an interesting look is taken at the cases of individual workers who have taken strike action and whether they thought going on strike had been worth it....

Feb
02
2011

Hiring, Firing, Inspiring - Joint seminar with Lane 4, Grant Thornton, Eton Bridge and Towers Watson
#Employment

On Wednesday 23 March we are holding a breakfast seminar at the Hilton Hotel in Reading. It will be from 7.45 - 10.15am and will be on the key subjects of employee engagement, motivation and leadership - Hiring, Firing and Inspiring....

Feb
01
2011

Employers face 50% fine
#Employment

Despite the Coalition`s recent Employer`s Charter designed to redress the balance of employment legislation in favour of businesses, it now appears to have undermined many of its pledges. The Government has introduced a new proposal to fine employers 50% of the total compensation award, over and above the payout to the Claimant, if employer`s are found to have breached an individual`s rights. The fine, which is essentially a tax on businesses that make mistakes, would most likely be limited to a maximum of £5000 and could be reduced to half if the employer paid within 21 days....

Jan
28
2011

Dafydd Downes invited to speak at 5th Annual Working Time Forum
#Employment

Dafydd Downes, Head of our Employment Team in Wales, has been confirmed to speak at the upcoming 5th Annual Working Time Forum, to be held at the Celtic Manor Resort on 2nd and 3rd March....

Jan
27
2011

Employment Tribunal system to be overhauled
#Employment

Given the increasing number of Employment Tribunal claims, the huge expense caused to employers in defending them and the suggestions that tribunal claims put employers off employing new staff, there has been much talk about the need to overhaul the current system...and today the government has proposed various reforms....

Jan
26
2011

Zero tolerance in Andy Gray sacking?
#Employment

Andy Gray`s sacking by Sky has divided the nation, and not into those that know the off-side rule and those that don`t! His comments about the female assistant referee`s skills being limited because of her gender, which led to Sky deciding to dismiss him on the grounds that such sexist behaviour was completely unacceptable, has divided the nation into those that believe the punishment fitted the crime and those that see it as a complete over-reaction to a bit of banter. Interestingly the lady against whom the comments were made has made no complaint and appears to be of tough enough character to let it all wash over her head. A measured reaction that could also have been taken by Sky? Or was Sky right to adopt a "zero tolerance" approach to the "lads culture" and impose the harshest of punishments on its employee?...

Jan
25
2011

Whistle blowing - allegations of bad faith can be raised at the tribunal hearing
#Employment

A Tribunal found that an allegation of bullying and harassment made in a letter to the Claimant`s manager was not a protected disclosure under the whistle blowing legislation as it was not made in good faith but out of personal antagonism. Although the words "bad faith" were not used the Tribunal was satisfied that the disclosure was not protected....

Jan
25
2011

Justifications for retaining a compulsory retirement age
#Employment

Employers will be in a state of uncertainty as to what will suffice as a legitimate aim to justify a difference of treatment on the grounds of age when the default retirement age is abolished with effect from 1 October 2011. The ECJ has confirmed in various cases that Member States can lawfully set a default retirement age provided it can be objectively and reasonably justified....

Jan
25
2011

Rebranding led to direct discrimination
#Employment

In Lisboa v Realpubs Ltd and others the EAT held that a policy of trying to rebrand a pub where the Claimant (a gay man) worked to appeal to non gay customers constituted direct discrimination against him as a gay employee who was not comfortable with implementing such a policy. The EAT stated that the key question was not whether the aim of the policy was lawful but whether the policy had been implemented in such a way that the gay customers were treated less favourably on grounds of their sexual orientation than heterosexual customers....

Jan
25
2011

Paternity rights and shared parental leave
#Employment

From April 2011 paternity rights will be significantly extended by the Additional Paternity Leave Regulations (the Regulations). The Regulations apply to mothers of children whose expected week of birth begins on or after 3 April 2011. Similar rules also apply to adoptions that take place on or after that date. From this date a mother with a right to maternity leave will be able to transfer some of her entitlement to maternity leave to the father....

Jan
25
2011

White Paper could give Occupational Health a bigger role in public health
#Employment

The Healthy Lives, Healthy People White Paper published by the Department of Health in December argued that employers had a central role to play in encouraging better public health. Health at Work will be one of five "networks" set up in early 2011 as part of a new "Public Health Responsibility Deal", with the other four being food, alcohol, physical activity and behaviour change. There will also be documents published on mental health, tobacco control, obesity, sexual health, pandemic flu preparedness, health protection and emergency preparedness....

Jan
24
2011

It is for employers to show that detriments are in no sense whatsoever on the grounds of a protected disclosure
#Employment

In Fecitt and others v NHS Manchester EAT/0150/10 the EAT have held that in detriment claims under s.47B of the Employment Rights Act 1996 (commonly referred to as whistleblowing claims) it is for the employer to show that the dismissal was "in no sense whatsoever" on the grounds of the protected disclosure. This means that the disclosure must play no more than a trivial part in causing the detriment....

Jan
20
2011

Swiss bank UBS makes over 44 page dress code
#Employment

The UBS dress code, which ran to 44 pages, has become something of an internet phenomenon after being leaked in December 2010. The original dress code was extremely comprehensive. Interesting points raised include asking female staff to only wear underwear that matches their skin tone as well as a limit on the amount of jewellery a woman can wear (7 items at the most)....

Jan
17
2011

Couples to share maternity leave
#Employment

Worryingly the announcement today by Nick Clegg regarding couples sharing maternity leave, where fathers can take some of the mother`s unused leave, goes even further than previously expected, by suggesting that the time off could be taken in shorter "blocks" of time rather than all at the same time or concurrently rather than consecutively....

Jan
14
2011

EAT holds that employer atempting to make a pub less attractive to gay customers discriminated against a gay employee
#Employment

In Lisboa v Realpubs Ltd and others the EAT held that a policy of trying to rebrand a pub where the Claimant worked to appeal to non gay customers constituted direct discrimination against a gay employee who was not comfortable with implementing such a policy....

Jan
14
2011

Retirement Process Update - Extent to which statutory procedures can still be used
#Employment

Most retirement policies reflect the current statutory retirement procedures which set out a national default retirement age of 65. Where this statutory procedure has been followed to the letter, employers have been able to retire employees without risk of unfair dismissal or age discrimination claims....

Jan
13
2011

End of the default retirement age
#Employment

Ministers have confirmed that the default retirement age will end, as planned, this year. Therefore, retirements falling before 1 October 2011 can still be effected provided notice of retirement is given no later than 30 March 2011, so employers need to be monitoring closely 2011 retirement dates now....

Jan
13
2011

End of the default retirement age
#Employment

Ministers have confirmed that the default retirement age will end, as planned, this year. Therefore, retirements falling before 1 October 2011 can still be effected provided notice of retirement is given no later than 30 March 2011, so employers need to be monitoring closely 2011 retirement dates now....

Jan
12
2011

Sacked for sledging: teachers on a slippery slope
#Employment

The press story of the dismissal of Swansea design and technology teacher, Richard Tremelling, has caused outrage not only in Swansea but has attracted much national and international condemnation. Mr Tremelling was not only sacked for allowing two 15 year pupils to have a ten minute riding session in the snow on a "design classic" Scandinavian sledge at the end of a lesson, which Mr Tremelling had brought in to school to demonstrate, he was then subjected to professional misconduct proceedings which could have led this week to his removal from the teaching register altogether....

Jan
11
2011

BBC Loses Age Discrimination Claim
#Employment

"Youth," according to Herbert Henry Asquith, "would be an ideal state if it came a little later in life." Whether or not this sentiment was foremost on the mind of the Judge in the tribunal claim brought by Miriam O`Reilly has yet to be known. We can be more certain of the fact however that today`s Judgment from the London Central ET will have far-reaching implications in the media....

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